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Ames Public Library
is a department of
the City of Ames.

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Support the Ames Public Library
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Volunteering at the Ames Public Library

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Every year, over 400 volunteers help support the Ames community by helping with various aspects of library services. We strive to match eager volunteers with rewarding positions to enhance the services and programming that Ames Public Library offers. APL Volunteer Services also works with court-ordered Community Services participants as well as library customers who would like like to address their fines by participating in our Fine Alternative Program.

Who can Volunteer?

Participants in Volunteer Services programming must be 11 years of age or older. Some exceptions may be made for groups of children completing service learning projects through school or other organizations.  Additionally, because family volunteering is encouraged at APL, younger children are welcome to volunteer with their parents or grandparents.

How to Sign Up

If you are interested in volunteering opportunities, including the summer youth volunteer program, community service, and fine alternative programs, or would like more information, contact the Volunteer Services Coordinator at or (515) 239-5663.

Volunteer Opportunities

Ames Public Library has a variety of volunteer positions available for adults, teenagers, and families who are interested in making a positive impact on the Ames community and its quality of life. Here is a list of some of the volunteer opportunities available. If you have a particular interest or skill area not listed here, please talk to the Volunteer Services Coordinator about other opportunities.

Youth Volunteers

Applications for the Summer APL-Y (youth) Volunteer Program are available at the checkout desk. Applications are due May 15. Because of our temporary location, positions will be limited to the Library's partipation in Little Cyclones Camp, a summer school enrichment camp held at the Ames Middle School.  Volunteers will support literacy/craft activities and assist with the online reading program including registration and prize distribution, either at the middle school or library. There will be additional volunteer tutoring opportunities with the Ames Reads summer programming at multiple locations throughout Ames. If you have questions, please feel free to contact the Volunteer Services Coordinator, Sarah Bohlke at or 239-5663.


Help beautify the library by adopting a shelf unit or string of units. Every week to two weeks you will make sure your shelves are cleaned, straightened and looking sharp! The schedule is very flexible and depending on how many shelves you adopt, would only take 30 minutes to an hour. This would be a perfect opportunity for a family who visits the library frequently.

Home Delivery

A volunteer is needed to make one delivery a month. The delivery will need to be the 2nd Thursday of every month at approximately 9:30 am. The day is not flexible but the time may be. Generally, deliveries will take approximately 1 hour. A valid driver’s license and good driving record are required.

Literary Grounds Cashier

Shifts currently available in our used book store/coffee shop are

  • Tuesday afternoons 3:00-5:00;
  • Friday and Saturday mornings 9:00-11:00;
  • Saturday afternoon 2:00-4:00

Volunteers will perform basic cashier duties, will prepare beverages, and complete light cleaning needs. Shifts are generally two hours, once a week.

Material Resource Volunteer

Assist staff once a week with preparing new library materials for checkout and repairing damaged materials. Some tasks included in this position will be to cover books and adhere labels.  Precision in cutting and label application is important to these responsibilities. 



There are other areas of volunteer needs not listed here including special projects and events, so please ask about opportunities that may be of more interest to you. 

Contact UsContact Us

For more information, call (515) 239-5663 or e-mail